Harley-Davidson plans an overhaul for its future range and will be introducing up to 100 new motorcycles over the next decade, and electric bikes will be part of those new models. The American manufacturer will have a diverse line-up, and electric motorcycles are expected to be a new ‘sub-range’ in the Bar & Shield brand’s product portfolio. In a recent statement, Bill Davidson – Vice President of the Harley-Davidson Museum in Milwaukee, and great-grandson of the company’s founder William A Davidson said that electric bikes are part of Harley’s plan.
“We actually showed a prototype of the electric LiveWire [in 2014] and that project is alive and well. We don’t know yet when we’re going to introduce it but it is progressing well and we will eventually introduce it,” Bill Davidson said while speaking to Australia’s Drive.com.au. When asked about if there will be a range of electric bikes, Davidson said that they can’t really about it at this stage.
The Harley-Davidson Project LiveWire was first showcased in 2014 and has been described as the most radical approach by the brand in its 114 year history. The LiveWire is an equivalent to the Iron 883 Sportster in terms of performance, Power comes from a 7kWh battery pack paired to a liquid cooled electric motor which generates 55 kW (around 74 bhp) and 70 Nm of torque. At the time of its showcase, the LiveWire had a range of 85 km in a single charge.
Harley has also been clear that its electric bikes will continue to carry the brand’s philosophy. Speaking on the electric Harleys not having the distinctive V-Twin exhaust note, Bill said, “I can tell you the philosophy we have applied to our V-twins is the same we are applying to the electric motorcycle in terms of sound, performance and feel, which are just as important with the electric bike as they are with our more traditional bikes.”
With development underway, you can expect the performance and range to see better numbers on Harley’s future electric motorcycles. It will be too early to talk about the launch timeline. With respect to Harley’s 100 new bikes, it will be interesting to see the company diversify its range with all-new models, while its existing range will see a makeover as well. Then, there are likely to be market specific products. The next decade then, will be an action-packed one for Harley-Davidson.